Challenging Concepts in Anaesthesia PDF – Cases with Expert Commentary
6.7 MB PDF
People learn in different ways. As a preclinical medical student in the last millennium in an ancient university some 50 miles northwest of London, I experienced two very distinct forms of education: didactic ‘talking-head’ lectures and small group tutorials. I could not learn anything from lectures, although I found them a very useful form of relaxation, almost always falling asleep within five minutes of the start of the lecture. Tutorials largely comprised my colleagues impressing my tutor with the extent of their knowledge, and me making an even greater impression on him with the seemingly unfathomable depth of my ignorance. My clinical training saw me in a short white coat amidst a row of similarly clad medical students looking for all the world like a flock of sheep that was dumbly following a consultant on a seemingly endless ward round. This was the era of ‘teaching by humiliation’ and, although some of my peers responded well to the fear of the consultant bearing down on them and shouting at them with gleeful and taunting derision, it didn’t work for me. In desperation, I turned to textbooks, but these were mostly frightful things in those days. Chapter upon chapter of closely packed, sterile prose addressing abstract concepts such as the Loop of Henle, the Blood-Brain Barrier and Non-Acute Sclerosing Panencephalitis—things that I found impossible to relate in any real way to my hoped-for future work as a doctor.
You will by now have gathered that I managed to qualify—but only just. My lamentable efforts at acquiring information from the educational techniques then available to me did not see me reach the upper slopes of academia in my year, and it was for this reason that I started my medical career in the most forgettable hospitals in the gloomiest parts of South West London—I will not name names. However, it was in these drear institutions that my world of learning changed almost in an instant. I actually started to learn, and the reason that I started to learn was because the patients in front of me were real people with real names and real problems. When the facts on offer made sense in the context of an individual that I could see or at very least envisage, they came to life, and as they came to life, I found that I could retain the information. I became involved. I learned.
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